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Meeting your two new children…priceless

Yesterday, after months and months of pictures and anxious waiting, we finally got to meet our new children. The emotions of the last two days are impossible to capture in words, but I guess I’ll try anyway.

The drive to the transition home was a bumpy, diesel-fume filled ride through living conditions and squalor we’d only seen on TV and in pictures. There’s no way to describe life here for the average poor, and we’ll post pictures in a few days…but the whole experience of poverty, dirt, rags, animals, filth, fumes, mud, and everything else can’t be adequately described in word or picture, only experienced first-hand.

After arriving at the transition home, we were whisked into the eating area to wait for our children. H and H came timidly into the room, then met us with the biggest, tightest, longest hugs anyone can imagine. They didn’t want to let go, and we didn’t either…so we didn’t, for a long time. Both of them were understandably shy after all they’d been through but loosened up after a few minutes, especially when crayons and Hot Wheels came out of our bag. Add a new cross necklace for our daughter and an impromptu game of indoor soccer with our son and we all had a blast. At the end of our short time together, we escorted the children to lunch. They sat down to their meal of rice, meat, and bread, but not before our daughter fed us both a huge mouthful of rice and shared her own piece of bread (feeding a guest, literally feeding them, is a huge honor in this culture for the recipient). It was really a touching moment, and our little son teared up a bit and whispered a soft “I love you” in Amharic as we were leaving.

Today was more of the same, but most of our time was spent outside playing soccer, using beads for marbles, and throwing paper airplanes outside off the balcony to the grounds below. Our time today passed too fast, and the children both fed us a couple bites of their traditional Ethiopian meal on our way out the door. We know that they know we’re coming back for them, but we don’t know if they really “get” it yet. Hopefully God will give us all peace in our time apart. Needless to say, for the three families traveling back to our guest houses together, the ride home was solemn and silent. Even sitting here, reflecting on it, and writing about it is sad. Every day until we’re able to bring them home will be difficult as we know what beautiful little treasures we’ve left here away from their new home and their new family.


1 Cheryl { 07.08.11 at 8:27 pm }

That is SO amazingly touching, Rachel. I can imagine how heartbreaking it is to have to leave them and longing to be with them. We pray so much that your letter will be where it needs to be on Monday so that the waiting period is shorter. It sounds like they have been waiting for you as much as you have for them. Much love, Cheryl

2 Kay { 07.12.11 at 12:47 pm }

wow… amazing!! i can’t wait to meet these children!!! i pray i get the chance some day. i am praying for you guys because i just can’t imagine having to walk away from my children for any length of time. may God be with your heart, rachel!!

3 Cheryl { 07.12.11 at 5:16 pm }

Rachel, looking so forward to your next blog. I know you just got home. It took me a couple of days after the long, (tremendously long and very eventful) trip home from Tanzania to become oriented again. It was crazy. It was like my mind was in a fog and still in Africa.

Welcome home! Eat some meat!! Ha, that’s what I did!

4 Tiffany { 07.13.11 at 7:37 am }

Well, I have FINALLY remembered to actually sit down and read your blog. I have been keeping you in my prayers, but remember to check you blog when I don’ t have access to the computer. Now after reading it, I have HUGE elephant tears running down my face. Happy tears of joy for finally meeting them as well as sad ones that you will have to wait a bit more for your children to be home with ya’ll. I cannot wait to see you again and hear all about it. Much love & prayers.

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